PETALING JAYA: Supporters of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (pic) in the PKR leadership have rallied to his defence, saying that he does not need to apologise for sacking Bera PKR division chief Zakaria Abdul Hamid.
PKR communications director Fahmi Fadzil said the decision to sack Zakaria was made by the central leadership council on the recommendation of the Disciplinary Committee, not the party president.
"As such, the matter of an apology by the president does not arise. The best forum for the aggrieved is as per the party constitution, which is for the sacked member to file an appeal," said Fahmi.
Similar views were shared by PKR Disciplinary Board chairman Datuk Ahmad Kassim, who called on the 20 PKR central committee members who sent a memorandum in protest of Zakaria's sacking to defend their views in the coming party meeting.
Ahmad said that any move to revise the decision to sack Zakaria must be made during the central leadership council meeting.
He also said that the decision to sack Zakaria was made by the central leadership council, not by the Disciplinary Board or Anwar.
"Amendments or revisions to the decision must be made inside the central leadership council meeting and not outside the meeting.
I received the memorandum and it will be deliberated in the coming Disciplinary Board meeting and I will make recommendations in the coming central leadership council meeting," said Ahmad.
"I'm pleading to those who signed the memorandum to defend their views in the coming central leadership council meeting," he said in a statement issued Saturday (Nov 30).
Central committee member Datuk Abdullah Sani Abdul Hamid said the 20 leaders who signed the memorandum has no locus standi to comment on the matter because they did not attend party meetings without a reason.
"Join the party meetings. If you don't participate in meetings, you won't know the details of the issue," added Abdullah.
Abdullah said the lack of two-thirds support from the central committee members on Zakaria's sacking does not arise as the Disciplinary Board chairman had recommended the sacking of Zakaria to the central leadership council.
Abdullah also said that Zakaria is free to appeal against his sacking to the party.
"He can appeal, that is a very clear procedure in the party's constitution," he added.
Meanwhile, Perak PKR Chief Farhash Wafa Salvador Rizal Mubarak accused Azmin of losing all direction and attempting to complicate matters out of sheer desperation.
Farhash also questioned Azmin's continued absence in party meetings while criticising the PKR deputy president for hosting a meeting with Opposition MPs recently.
"If Azmin had constantly given excuses for not attending party meetings due to alleged ministerial work, then what about the 19 MPP members with him?
Why easy for him to find the time to meet opposition members at his official residence," he asked.
Farhash, who is also Anwar's political secretary, said there was no need for Anwar to apologise over the sacking of the duo, as he claimed that it was a decision that was supported by more than two-thirds of the central committee members.
The 20 central committee members who signed the memorandum were Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, Zuraida Kamaruddin, Tian Chua, Haniza Mohamed Talha, Hilman Idham, Dr Daroyah Alwi, Amiruddin Shaari, Datuk Mohd Rashid Hasnon, Sivarasa Rasiah, Rahimah Majid, Elizabeth Wong, Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, Zakaria Abdul Hamid, Radzlan Jalaluddin, Datuk Dr Mansor Othman, Datuk Kamaruddin Jaafar, Azmizam Zaman Huri, Gan Pei Nei, Hee Loy Sian and Datuk Seri R Santhara Kumar.
The memorandum signed by the 20 leaders had claimed the Disciplinary Board did not propose the sacking of Zakaria but had recommended a show-cause letter instead.
They had also demanded Anwar to apologise over the decision to sack Zakaria, as it did not obtain the support of at least two-thirds of the central committee members.
Last Sunday, PKR announced that Zakaria and Ismail Duhladi, an ordinary member from Pahang, were stripped of their party membership following corruption allegations brought against them by the MACC.
The recent sacking of the duo had widened gaps within PKR, as leaders aligned with Anwar had defended the sacking decision while those supporting deputy president Azmin are crying foul over the matter.
Leaders aligned with Azmin's faction have also been notably absent from party meetings for several months, following strained ties with Anwar's faction.